An easy taco casserole recipe that takes less than 30 minutes to cook, plus we show you the tips and tricks whether you want to cook with beef OR lighten it up a bit and make a turkey taco casserole. Just cook the meat, combine, and bake!
You’ll love this taco casserole keto recipe, that’s also perfect for eating low carb, gluten-free, and sugar-free.
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The photos were updated for this recipe on July 10, 2o20.
Keto Taco Casserole
Keto taco casserole is a fantastic variation to standard tacos that includes lots of cheese, tons of flavor, and is so simple to make! I’m going to even admit, I might even prefer this taco casserole over tacos. So much gooey cheesy flavor, it’s just hard to beat.
No need to wait until Taco Tuesday, you love this low carb casserole every day of the week. This is a keto taco casserole with cottage cheese, that will turn cottage cheese haters into lovers! Seriously! Just read the reviews! This honestly makes the BEST keto Mexican casserole, it’s super hearty and filling. You’ll just need a small portion.
Why You’ll Love This Keto Mexican Casserole
- It’s so tasty you won’t even miss the taco shells
- The keto Mexican casserole cooks in just 30 minutes!
- It only takes 5 simple ingredients, plus any garnishes you want to add
- You can use either ground beef or make a turkey taco casserole
- It’s easy to adapt to a casserole dish, individual casseroles, or make as a one pan skillet meal
- A secret ingredient gives it a hearty and rich flavor
- This is a keto taco casserole with no cauliflower. Many recipes add cauliflower, ours does not.
One of the things we LOVE about this keto taco casserole is that it only takes 5 ingredients!
- Ground beef (we used 80% lean/20% fat) – ground turkey works well too! We used Butcher Box
- Cottage cheese- use regular, not low fat
- Chunky salsa
- Keto taco seasoning – we make our own no-carb seasoning since most store brands add sugar
- Cheddar cheese, shredded – use medium, sharp, or mix the cheese half and half with Monterey Jack. Shredding fresh cheese works better than pre-shredded cheese.
Optional toppings– lettuce, tomatoes, olives, avocado, salsa, sour cream, cilantro, or chives.
The exact ingredient quantities are at the bottom of the post in the recipe card you can print off.
We get an every other month grassfed meat delivery from Butcher Box, here’s the Butcher Box site to check out what they’re all about. You get $30 off your first box with our link.
You might be surprised to see cottage cheese on the ingredient list but it’s actually one of my cooking secret weapons that add tons of cheesy flavor but help the dish to hold it’s shaping. If you’re following a keto diet you need to make sure you’re using the full fat cottage cheese and not low fat. The low-fat cheese is higher in carbs than the regular cottage cheese.
Is Cottage Cheese Keto?
Some people have wondered if cottage cheese is keto, and YES, it can be a part of a keto diet as long as you’re sticking to low carb cottage cheese brands. Be sure to check various brand labels and be using full-fat cottage cheese too. In general, cheaper brands often add fillers but it also increases the carb count.
The Trader Joes brand we used has 6 carbs per cup and 12 carbs for the whole container, so with this recipe being 8 servings, the cottage cheese counts for 1.5 of the net carb per serving.
Making Keto Mexican Casserole
You’ll be so surprised that you can put this keto taco casserole recipe together and bake it in only 20 minutes! You’ll be browning the meat, mixing the special sauce, combining it with the meat, and baking until heated through.
Be sure to drain the cottage cheese, some brands seem to add more liquid to the container than others and too much liquid might make a runny casserole!
Preheat the oven to 375.
Brown the Meat
While it’s heating get started on cooking your ground beef (or ground turkey) on medium heat on the stovetop. This should take about 7-8 minutes.
Tip: If you have a cast-iron skillet, this becomes a one-dish keto friendly taco casserole since you can bake in it too!
While the meat is cooking, slice and dice any optional taco toppings you want to add after the keto Mexican casserole is done cooking.
Drain the grease well.
In a medium-sized bowl combine the cottage cheese, 3/4 cup of the shredded cheese, the chunky salsa, and the taco seasoning. Make sure you’re using a sugar-free taco seasoning and sugar-free salsa to keep the taco casserole keto-friendly.
Mix the meat with the cottage cheese and salsa mixture. If you’re using a cast-iron skillet you can carefully just add it to the skillet and mix it with the meat.
If you did not use an oven-safe skillet, spoon the casserole mixture into a small baking dish. Use one that’s narrow and an oval or rectangle, not an 8×8 pan.
Top with 1+ cup of shredded cheddar cheese or a blend or cheddar and Monterey Jack.
Bake for 20 minutes on the middle rack until the casserole is heated through and the cheese is bubbling. If you’re using individual-sized ramekins as we did with the turkey taco casserole, cut the baking time down to 15 minutes.
Serve immediately and enjoy!
You can also serve the keto taco casserole recipe with all of your favorite taco toppings like chopped lettuce, tomatoes, olives, jalapenos, avocado, sour cream, cilantro or salsa.
Can I Make Turkey Taco Casserole?
Whether you want to make this easy keto taco casserole recipe with ground beef or turkey, or as one whole casserole or by making individual serving mini casseroles, we include tips and recipe adaptions too.
If you’re looking for a keto ground turkey casserole, this is seriously a winner!
Turkey Taco Casserole Tips
- Using regular ground turkey (and NOT super lean), this was actually very good and we would definitely make it again! Ground turkey doesn’t have as much flavor as ground beef (in my opinion), so I’d suggest either adding:
- Add extra seasoning like an extra tsp of taco seasoning OR 1/4 tsp+ of garlic salt
- You can also keep the casserole itself on the mild side and add extra toppings or even hot sauce to kick up the heat.
- Since this recipe calls for 2 lbs of ground meat and I only had 1 lb on hand, I decided to half the recipe ingredients and make individual size portions in ramekins. They took 5 minutes LESS to cook, otherwise, the recipe instructions are the same.
- You can use either ground beef or turkey, but don’t forget to add extra seasoning like garlic salt or taco seasoning if you’re making a turkey taco casserole since it has a milder taste
- Use chunky salsa instead of a liquidy salsa to prevent the keto taco casserole from being runny.
- Cook everything in a cast-iron skillet to make this a one-dish meal, or use any skillet you have and then transfer the casserole to a baking dish.
- If you’re making individual keto taco casserole in ramekins, bake the recipe for 15 minutes instead of 20.
- Shred your own cheese from a block since pre-shredded cheese adds starch to keep it from clumping, which also increases the carbs.
- Use cheddar cheese, or go half and half with Monterey Jack for variety.
- Be sure to check the label on the cottage cheese! Buy a brand with low net carbs, ours had 5 net carbs per 1/2 cup serving.
- Cut back on either the cheese or cottage cheese if preferred.
More Keto Mexican Recipes
- Low Carb Chicken Green Chili Casserole
- Chicken Fajita Bake
- Green Chicken Enchilada Bake
- Baked Salsa Chicken
- Crockpot taco soup
- Taco salad (keto low carb)
Please leave a review if you make our taco casserole keto recipe! We love feedback from readers, plus it helps others too.
And pin the recipe for later on Pinterest so you can easily get back to it!
V V V
- 2 lb ground beef
- 16 oz cottage cheese (regular, not low fat)
- 1 cup chunky salsa
- 2-3 Tbsp taco seasoning (sugar free)
- 1 3/4 cup shredded Mexican style cheese
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- Cook the ground beef on medium heat on the stove top. Drain the grease.
- Drain the cottage cheese, some brands have a lot of liquid.
- Combine the cottage cheese, salsa, taco seasoning and 3/4 cup of the shredded cheese in a bowl. Add in the cooked ground beef.
- Bake the keto taco casserole in a low casserole dish that's oval or rectangular, not an 8x8 dish.
- Sprinkle with the remaining 3/4 cup of shredded cheese.
- Bake for 20 minutes until the mixture is heated through and the cheese is melted.
- Serve immediately and enjoy!
You can use either ground beef or turkey, but don't forget to add extra seasoning like garlic salt or taco seasoning if you're making a turkey taco casserole since it has a milder taste
Use chunky salsa instead of a liquidy salsa to prevent the keto taco casserole from being runny. Drain if there's a lot of liquid.
Optional toppings- lettuce, tomatoes, olives, avocado, salsa, sour cream, cilantro or chives.
Cook everything in a cast-iron skillet to make this a one dish meal, or use any skillet you have and then transfer the casserole to a baking dish.
If you're making individual keto taco casserole in ramekins, bake the recipe for 15 minutes instead of 20.
Shred your own cheese from a block since pre-shredded cheese adds starch to keep it from clumping, which also increases the carbs.
Use cheddar cheese, or go half and half with Monterey Jack for variety.
Be sure to check the label on the cottage cheese! Buy a brand with low net carbs, ours had 5 net carbs per 1/2 cup serving.
Cut back on either the cheese or cottage cheese if preferred.
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- Fody Foods Vegan Taco Seasoning | Flavorful Blend | Low FODMAP Certified | Gut Friendly No Onion No Garlic | IBS Friendly Kitchen Staple | Gluten Free Lactose Free Non GMO | 4.02 Ounce
- Corning Ware "French White" (1.5 Qt.) Oval Casserole Baking Dish (F-6-B)
- Lodge L10SK3ASHH41B Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Skillet with Red Silicone Hot Handle Holder, 12-Inch
Nutrition InformationYield 6 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 523Total Fat 36gSaturated Fat 15gTrans Fat 1gUnsaturated Fat 15gCholesterol 168mgSodium 1161mgCarbohydrates 9gFiber 1gSugar 0gProtein 55g